Maksim Antakov

Maksim Antakov

2k-ywq-BnPY.jpg2010 graduate, associate professor at the Institute of Biomedical systems

– Tell a few words about yourself? Where are you from? Why did you decide to choose MIET?

– I was born in 1985 and lived up to 10 years in a small military town in Latvia. Then we moved to Tambov, where I left Tambov Regional Physics and Mathematics Lyceum number 14. Although it is called differently for the time being it is still considered to be one of the best educational institutions of the country. When choosing MIET I was driven by two factors: the picturesque city of Zelenograd and a relatively late enrollment in July. In high school you do not realize how perspective and prestigious the university is – you just take pot luck. At that time we had university guides - books for a couple of hundred pages, but they did not reflect reality, they just contained brief information. Choosing a university or a program you still do not quite know in what you will engage yourself in 5-10 years.

– You graduated from the Institute of Biomedical System. Why did you decide to choose it?

– I graduated from the Institute of Biomedical Systems (BMS) in 2010. When I was studying, we had program: Electronics and Microelectronics with specialization in Biomedical Electronics and Microelectronics. Also there I took my Ph.D. specializing in Condensed Matter Physics. I got to BMS almost by accident. The sophomores were rated according to their performance. I did well so I was in the top ten and could choose any department. So I decided to follow my wife so that we had the same schedule.

– What did you feel when you became a freshman? Was the training hard? Was there any desire to quit?

– Being a freshman at that time was much more interesting. You learnt everything by yourself. There is now an army of mentors who train freshmen and prevent them from learning from failure. The training was quite easy, there was not a single subject from which I felt down. Drawing was a little annoying, but this was due to my inherent laziness. The training was so easy that it allowed me to get a second degree at MIET at the same time. I never wanted to quit, I wanted to finish as soon as possible.

– How did studying at the university affect your attitude to life?

– At the University I met y wife, we got married during the first year. I also met my best friend here, made many acquaintances. That`s for what I am grateful to MIET.

– Have your expectations of the university been met?

– That would be wrong to say that they were met. The fact is that school leavers have no expectations about studies at all. They are looking forward to live in the dormitory, get new friends, try something new, imagine the way they will study. They do not place much importance on knowledge, whether it will be useful in the future, what they will manage to remember after exams. Years later I realized that I am grateful to MIET for teaching me how to think, search for information and analyze it, for giving me a broad base of knowledge. May be such subjects as sociology, cultural studies and etc. influenced this to a lesser extent; however I got very qualified technical knowledge.

– What are the most memorable subjects? Do you have favorite teachers?

– I always loved mathematical analysis and I still do. I was very frustrated when the lectures by Prof. Kalney were over. I thought there would never face this subject again. However then I attended a course of computational tomography by Prof. Tereshchenko with surface integrals of the second kind over the solid angle. I remember trips to Moscow State University to the Department of Anatomy. But the biggest impression was left on me by Professor Rychagov from Samsung Company. The only professor who taught what he used during the work at the large product company.

– What do you remember from student life? Have you actively participated in university events?

– Only once I participated in KVN ("Club of the Funny and Inventive People"), during my first year. Now I regret that the record of that performance has not been saved. I was more focused on learning and supporting a young family.

– Tell a few words about your career? Are you satisfied with what you are engaged now?

– During the first year of a postgraduate school I got a job on Skype. A year later, Skype became a division of Microsoft. There I was engaged in quality assurance. I wrote programs that checked other programs for defects. Then I worked for a year in Prague and returned to Zelenograd. Since 2016 I have been working at WildApricot, Personify (Canadian-American-Russian company) as a Senior Software Development Engineer in Test. I will not be a prude if I say that I like working in the product company, primarily because in IT sphere one can raise much money. And the very field of "ensuring quality control" is close to research activities. First, you assume what defects may be allowed during development, then you come up with an automatic framework so as not to manually check each release. This, of course, is not advanced and not scientific at all, but it allows people here and now to solve their needs at a high level without risk to their health and wallet. I have been in this profession for almost 10 years, and during this time I have already received a professional deformation. Involuntarily, the eye clings to defects; if you do something, you immediately think about how to verify that you did it correctly.

Therefore, I am conducting a course at the BMS Institute called "Quality Control of Biomedical Instruments and Software", to share a critical outlook on quality with those students who connect their lives with the development of any products, and especially medical equipment. Whether I am good at it – you`d better ask my students.

– Would you recommend something to our students?

– Times are changing; approaches to education are changing too. Different kinds of education support systems like ORIOKS appear in MIET. Now there are a lot of accessible and free online educational courses. You just need to open the browser and search what you are interested in. Therefore, the advice is simple, if something is interesting – master it independently. Do not be afraid to try something new.

– Any plans for the future. What would you like to achieve?

– There is no desire to shoot for the stars. All my plans are all about my family. All in all, I'm already a dad for one girl so I want to provide this girl with security and open for her as many doors to the future as possible and it is up to her to choose the way.